University: Plymouth
University: Plymouth

The Plymouth University Peninsula Schools of Medicine and Dentistry has been in existence since 2000, and the medical course has been developed with the guidance of clinicians at Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust and South Devon Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust. Having such a new medical school means that students will have access to modern facilities and equipment, such as the Clinical Skills Resource Centre (CSRC), which features specially designed replicas of hospital wards and emergency rooms, with high-specification patient-simulators. Another feature that makes Plymouth stand out for Medicine, is the small course size. Undergraduates and graduates both apply to the one 5-year programme, and the class size is roughly 100 students. Early patient contact is an important feature of this course, and the range of intercalated degree options is wider than most, including not only science subjects, but also subjects such as Music and Psychology. A particularly popular intercalated degree is the BSc in Emergency Care. Teaching is mainly delivered in structured small-group sessions, with elements of problem-based learning. The final year sees students very much as part of the ward team as they prepare for their Foundation Year 1 jobs. Plymouth is located on the South coast of England and the surrounding countryside is noted for its natural beauty.

University: Plymouth

Undergraduate Applicants

  • Minimum Admission Criteria
  • No. of places
  • Degree
  • GCSEs
  • A levels
  • Exam
  • Interview
  • Work experience
  • 5-year course
  • 101
  • N/A
  • 7 grade A-C
  • AAA-A*AA
  • UKCAT/GAMSAT
  • Panel
  • Desirable

Graduate Applicants

  • Minimum Admission Criteria
  • No. of places
  • Degree
  • GCSEs
  • A levels
  • Exam
  • Interview
  • Work experience
  • 5-year course
  • 101
  • No minimum
  • No minimum
  • No minimum
  • GAMSAT
  • Panel
  • Desirable
*See below

Undergraduates can apply to a 5-year programme, with the option of intercalating.

A/AS levels and GCSEs

Applicants will be required to achieve a grade between AAA-A*AA, which includes Chemistry and Biology. AS levels will no longer be part of this criteria. General Studies is not accepted as the third A level subject.

Applicants should have 7 GCSE passes of grade A-C, to include English Language, Mathematics and Single Science plus Additional Science (or GCSE Biology and Chemistry).

IB

Candidates should have overall scores of 36-38, to include Higher Level Biology and Chemistry to at least grade 6.

Admissions Exam

The UKCAT is required for candidates who are school-leavers. The test is only valid for one year. However, note that if it has been over 2 years since an applicant completed their A levels, they may instead be required to take the GAMSAT, even if they are not graduates. This exam is valid for 2 application cycles. Note that the GAMSAT is also required for applicants who are applying with certain diplomas (see below). Non-UK/EU applicants are not required to take the UKCAT.

Access to Medicine courses

Candidates who have the following qualifications, may apply, so long as they sit the GAMSAT:

  • BTEC National Diploma in Applied Science
  • Advanced Diploma in Society, Health and Development
  • Access to HE Diploma (Science)

Other Diplomas

The Cambridge Pre-U diploma is accepted with grades of D3, D3 and M1, including Chemistry at D3 and Biology at a minimum of M1. Applicants will be required to pass the Global Perspectives and Independent Research element at a minimum of M3.

Widening Participation

Medical students and academic/clinical staff at Plymouth are involved in a number of outreach projects to local schools in Cornwall, Devon and Somerset. This project is student-led and is known as Widening Access to Medical School, or 'WAMS'. The medical school also runs an e-mentoring programme for Year 12-13 students nationally, to enable them to find out more about the application process, as well as the teaching and learning experiences of medical students enrolled on the BMBS programme. Please see the following link for further details: https://www.plymouth.ac.uk/your-university/about-us/university-structure/faculties/medicine-dentistry/widening-access-to-medical-school-wams

International Students

There are 6 spaces for non-EU students on the programme. If English is not your first language, the following qualifications may be offered as proof of proficiency:

  • IELTS band 7.5 or above with at least 7.0 in each of the Speaking and Listening sections (taken within 12 months of entry)
  • GCSE/IGCSE English Language (as a first language) grade A
  • IB score of 6 at the ordinary level in English Language (as a first language)

If you are applying as an overseas student and taken qualifications other than those listed above, please contact us by email (enquiries@themsag.com) if you would like more information on the minimum grades needed to be considered for a place in Medicine at Plymouth.

Policy on Re-applicants

The medical school welcomes subsequent applications from applicants who have previously been unsuccessful.

Policy on Deferrals

Applicants who wish to defer are welcome to state this on their application for consideration.

APPLICATION DEADLINES

Applications via UCAS for 2018/19 entry for both undergraduate programmes are open from 6th September 2017 and close on 15th October 2017

APPLICATION DOCUMENTS

  • Completed UCAS application form

SELECTION PROCESS

For UK/EU applicants, selection for interview is based on a combination of academic achievement, the UCAS personal statement and the UKCAT score. The cut-off UKCAT scores will vary each year, depending on the scores of other applicants applying to Plymouth. The overall UKCAT cut off for 2017 entry was 1870.

Note that international students are not required to sit the UKCAT and hence only their academic record and personal statement will be considered in the selection process.

For those applicants who are required to sit the GAMSAT rather than the UKCAT (i.e. applicants who have sat their A levels more than 2 years ago), they must meet the threshold scores in each section as well as overall. This threshold will change annually, depending on the results of that year’s pool of applicants. The following table shows the GAMSAT cut-off scores from the last 5 years:

GAMSAT Section2017 Entry2016 Entry2015 Entry2014 Entry2013 Entry2012 Entry
Section One (humanities) 55 51 56 55 55 55
Section Two (written) 62 52 52 59 59 59
Section Three (sciences) 61 60 54 50 50 50
Total overall score 65 64 65 65 64 64

The UCAS application may also be considered at the discretion of the admissions team.

INTERVIEW

The interview is panel-style and the panel may consist of clinicians, patients and/or members of the public. Candidates should be familiar with, and espouse the values of the NHS Constitution. The following qualities will be assessed during the interview:

  • Integrity
  • Veracity and honesty
  • Flexibility
  • Motivation and commitment
  • Pro-social attitudes, for example students who show empathy and who are non-judgmental
  • Communication skills, including listening
  • Potential for leadership
  • Students who show insight into what it is to be a doctor
  • The ability to be a team player
  • The ability to deal with stress appropriately
  • Problem solving skills
  • Students who know their limitations, their strengths and weaknesses
  • Reflectiveness
  • Students who demonstrate a suitable approach to life and people

Prior to the interview, applicants will be given half an hour to consider three scenarios which focus on contemporary ethical issues related to medicine and to choose one as the basis of their interview.

There are 101 places for UK/EU applicants and 6 places for non-EU applicants for 2018 entry. For 2016 entry there were 86 places, 6 of which were reserved for international students. There were 833 applications from Home/EU applicants, 572 school leavers and 261 graduates. 284 Home/EU applicants were offered interviews, of which 253 were school leavers and 31 graduates. 164 Home/EU applicants were made an offer, 150 school leavers and 14 graduates.

There were 111 overseas applicants. 29 overseas applicants were offered interviews. 11 offers were made to overseas students.

Medicine at the University of Plymouth is ranked 14th in the UK by the Guardian University Guide 2018.

It is ranked 18th in the UK by the Complete University Guide 2018

Graduates can apply to the 5-year programme.

Applicants who are currently Plymouth University students who are on track to achieve a 1st Class degree, or have obtained a 1st Class degree in the previous 2 years, are eligible to apply without needing to sit the GAMSAT. Degree courses eligible for this transfer include;

  • Human Biosciences
  • Biomedical Sciences
  • Healthcare Science (Life Sciences)
  • Healthcare Science (Physiological Sciences)
  • Exercise, Nutrition & Health
Degree and A levels

There are no minimum degree or A level requirements for this programme.

GCSEs

There are no minimum GCSE requirements for this programme.

IB Eligibility

There are no minimum IB requirements for this programme.

Admissions Exam

Graduate applicants must sit the GAMSAT, which is valid for 2 years.

Access to Medicine courses

Access courses do not contribute to the selection for interview, but if you are considering doing one of these courses to help to prepare for medical school, it is a good idea to contact the admissions department for their recommendations.

International Students

There are 6 spaces for non-EU students on the programme. If English is not your first language, the following qualifications may be offered as proof of proficiency:

  • IELTS band 7.5 or above with at least 7.0 in each of the Speaking and Listening sections (taken within 12 months of entry)
  • GCSE/IGCSE English Language (as a first language) grade A
  • IB score of 6 at the ordinary level in English Language (as a first language)

If you are applying as an overseas student and taken qualifications other than those listed above, please contact us by email (enquiries@themsag.com) if you would like more information on the minimum grades needed to be considered for a place in Medicine at Plymouth.

Policy on Re-applicants

The medical school welcomes subsequent applications from applicants who have previously been unsuccessful.

APPLICATION DEADLINES

Applications via UCAS for 2018/19 entry for both undergraduate programmes are open from 6th September 2017 and close on 15th October 2017.

Application Documents

  • Completed UCAS application form

SELECTION PROCESS

To be selected for interview, applicants must meet the threshold scores in each GAMSAT section as well as in the overall score. This threshold will change annually, depending on the results of that year’s pool of applicants. The following table shows the GAMSAT cut-off scores from the last 5 years:

GAMSAT Section2017 Entry2016 Entry2015 Entry2014 Entry2013 Entry2012 Entry
Section One (humanities) 55 51 56 55 55 55
Section Two (written) 62 52 52 59 59 59
Section Three (sciences) 61 60 54 50 50 50
Total overall score 65 64 65 65 64 64

The UCAS application may also be considered at the discretion of the admissions team.

INTERVIEW

The interview is panel-style and the panel may consist of clinicians, patients and/or members of the public. Candidates should be familiar with, and espouse the values of the NHS Constitution. The following qualities will be assessed during the interview:

  • Integrity
  • Veracity and honesty
  • Flexibility
  • Motivation and commitment
  • Pro-social attitudes, for example students who show empathy and who are non-judgmental
  • Communication skills, including listening
  • Potential for leadership
  • Students who show insight into what it is to be a doctor
  • The ability to be a team player
  • The ability to deal with stress appropriately
  • Problem solving skills
  • Students who know their limitations, their strengths and weaknesses
  • Reflectiveness
  • Students who demonstrate a suitable approach to life and people

Prior to the interview, applicants will be given half an hour to consider three scenarios which focus on contemporary ethical issues related to medicine and to choose one as the basis of their interview.

There are 101 places for UK/EU applicants and 6 places for non-EU applicants for 2018 entry. For 2016 entry there were 86 places, 6 of which were reserved for international students. There were 833 applications from Home/EU applicants, 572 school leavers and 261 graduates.

There were 111 overseas applicants. 284 Home/EU applicants were offered interviews, of which 253 were school leavers and 31 graduates. 29 overseas applicants were offered interviews. 164 Home/EU applicants were made an offer, 150 school leavers and 14 graduates. 11 offers were made to overseas students.

Medicine at the University of Plymouth is ranked 14th in the UK by the Guardian University Guide 2018.

It is ranked 18th in the UK by the Complete University Guide 2018

  1. 1. What are the good things about studying Medicine at this university?

    Peninsula medical school gives you the opportunity for clinical placements in the first couple of weeks of university which is a big bonus. From 3rd year you spend most of your time on the wards.

    In addition to this they use PBL, which helps to draw everyone into discussion and makes sure everyone understands key aspects of the topic.
    The support networks are fantastic, with mentors being assigned for every year and a 'family' being assigned for first years to be shown the ropes and go to should they have any questions. It is a very welcoming environment.

  2. 2. What is not so good about studying Medicine there?

    The anatomy teaching could be improved. There is no dissection, which in itself isn't necessarily a bad thing, but an improvement in learning anatomy is required. There are excellent teachers there but not enough time is assigned to it.

  3. 3. What advice do you have for someone thinking of studying Medicine there?

    Do it. It's a fantastic university and the location is great. Where else can you be in the hospital at 4pm and playing rugby on the beach at 5 with other students and doctors. There are a huge number of opportunities for research and extra-curricular activities too.

  4. 4. Do you have any tips on how to get in?

    Don't give up. It's a difficult road but it's worth it. If you're doing the GAMSAT, study hard for it and do the practice papers under exam conditions. For the UKCAT, the same can be said, practice, practice, practice!

    If you make it to interview, prepare well. It's a very friendly interview, and a lot of information about the set up can be found online - you just have to do the research. Make sure you know why you want to do medicine, and think about ethical challenges that may come up in medicine. Good luck.